The Lakes International Comic Art Festival has announced that comic artist Dave Crane, working with Kendal Community Theatre, will be inviting both locals and comics fans to become part of a “living graphic novel” during its fast-approaching Festival weekend (17th – 19th October 2014).
Dave, whose previous work includes “The Moon Bone Cycle“, a story based on Australian Aboriginal mythology, plans to interactively create a full-length comic starring Festival attendees, and the town of Kendal itself, and do a lot of the creation during the festival itself. The final work will be available in 2015, and the process will be blogged online as it unfolds.
All performers, and the festival, will be credited in the finished book.
Dave is a computer programmer, writer, artist and photographer with a lifelong burning interest in comics that just refuses to go away. He enjoys pushing the envelope, thinking out of the box, and taking the medium in new directions. Key influences are Scott McCloud, Lorenzo Mattotti and Dave McKean, as well as 20th and 21st Century film-makers and painters, and that vast uncontrolled melting pot of ideas known as the internet. He will be releasing his first anthology of work in time for the Lakes Festival, focused on re-telling traditional tales from around the world with a modern twist.
“I’m currently working with ways of getting a semi-“hand-drawn” look from photographs or video, using youtube and other resources for practice material,” Dave reveals (You can view examples here on Dave’s blog). “I’ve thought about interviewing attendees at a convention before, and recording the interview, to use as source material for a larger comic, either just using the interview as a way of getting them talking (and capturing their unique body language on film), or posing a structured set of questions and incorporating those into the story.
“I’m looking at creating a sort of improvisational approach to drama,” he expands. “With suitable safeguards – I’ll be running any narrative past the “performers” before committing to the final script/graphics.
Now, support from the Lakes International Comic Art Festival and Kendal Community Theatre means Dave can bring this project to life, recording possible material for the final graphic novel, composing a story around the recordings.
“With Kendal being an interesting place in its own right, both visually and historically, I’m hoping to incorporate local history to some extent, as well as drawing upon a number of universal themes,” the artist expands.
“We’re very keen to broaden the base of our work, and committed to forming creative partnerships with other organisations,” says Chris Taylor, the Artistic Director of Kendal Community Theatre. “A venture of this sort will offer new challenges and opportunities. The immediacy of Street performances, and the impact of Comic Art will prove a potent combination for creativity. We’re looking forward to it with everything bated.”
“I’m very excited to be working with Kendal Community theatre, and with the attendees of the Lakes International Comic Art Festival, on this truly collaborative creative venture,” says Dave. “Who knows what the day will bring, but it’s sure to be inspiring, surprising and a lot of fun, and a great stepping stone towards a unique and compelling story. If you’re coming to Kendal in October, do drop by, and we’ll look forward to working with you.”
• Kendal Commity Theatre Site: www.kendalcommunitytheatre.org
• Blog: http://davecrane.blogspot.co.uk
• Myths of this World: http://dave.sunwheeltech.com/moonbone.html
• Tickets for all the events at the Lakes International Comic Art Festival (17th – 19th October) are on sale now. For the full guest list, details of events and exhibitions and bookings visit: www.comicartfestival.com
The founder of downthetubes, which he established in 1998. John works as a comics and magazine editor, writer, and on promotional work for the Lakes International Comic Art Festival. He is currently editor of Star Trek Explorer, published by Titan – his third tour of duty on the title originally titled Star Trek Magazine.
Working in British comics publishing since the 1980s, his credits include editor of titles such as Doctor Who Magazine, Babylon 5 Magazine, and more. He also edited the comics anthology STRIP Magazine and edited several audio comics for ROK Comics. He has also edited several comic collections, including volumes of “Charley’s War” and “Dan Dare”.
He’s the writer of “Pilgrim: Secrets and Lies” for B7 Comics; “Crucible”, a creator-owned project with 2000AD artist Smuzz; and “Death Duty” and “Skow Dogs” with Dave Hailwood.